The collapse of the Victoria Embankment uncovers a passage to an unknown realm beneath the city. Langdon St. Ives sets out to explore it, not knowing that a brilliant and wealthy psychopathic murderer is working to keep the underworld’s secrets hidden for reasons of his own.
St. Ives and his stalwart friends investigate a string of ghastly crimes: the gruesome death of a witch, the kidnapping of a blind, psychic girl, and the grim horrors of a secret hospital where experiments in medical electricity and the development of human, vampiric fungi, serve the strange, murderous ends of perhaps St. Ives’s most dangerous nemesis yet.
I did assume it would take place more beneath London, I mean that is the name of the book. But it mostly took place above ground. Which sort of was a shame, cos the underworld seems really strange with toadstools that eat people.
Steampunk wise, yes it was an alternative Victorian England, but it was more gadgetwise it was steampunk. A few here and there, and witches too, oh and those weird toadstools.
It is a series, but I thought it worked well in its own. Sure there was talk about other characters. And I am sure I could have experienced things even more if I had read the other books, but that is the downfall when you jump into a series. So it works like this too.
The story. We have a professor St Ives who gets a new case about what is beneath London. But then more things happen. A psychic girl is kidnapped. Strange things are going on in London. Are they all connected somehow? To his help he has his wife, and well more people. But I can give you the details cos as things happen, we meet more people...as things happen. Spoilers darling.
It's kind of a thriller mystery set in a steampunk world. There is a strange sort of dry humour there too. The tone is actually really hard to describe.
But sure, sometimes I felt like, maybe everyone was too nice. More boom, and toadstools please! It was cool, but not always for me.
An interesting mix.
Paperback, 432 pages
Published June 9th 2015 by Titan Books